The end of a school year can be the most overwhelming time of all. Even in the home stretch, you need to take time to take care of YOU with self-care!
As the end of the school year approaches, teachers are tempted to throw their self-care tricks out the window and just go “all-in” to get everything done. I totally understand that but the problem is not taking care o//f yourself — even for a short time — can lead to burnout and breakdown that can last well past the end of the school year and even impact how you feel heading into the new school year.
(If you aren’t sure if you are struggling with burn-out, check out these signs!
Here are seven tips to help you prioritize your self-care to avoid burn-out!
Self Care is one of those areas that absolutely will not occur unless you prioritize. When you have so much going on, if you don’t keep self-care at the very top of your list, it will fall to the very bottom!
Schedule Time For Self-Care
This is one of the tricks I find the most helpful. Put an exact time into your schedule each day and stick to it. If it’s added to your schedule it becomes a “to-do” and you are more likely to do it. You are more likely to do what you need to do for work/family than something that takes care of yourself.
Set Clear Limits on Your Time
People will not respect your time until you do! Even though there is always more to do, working non-stop doesn’t actually help you get more done because you end up burnt out and broken down. Your limits do not have to be the same
Take Breaks Throughout the Day
We know how important breaks are for students but we forget how important they are for adults as well. Teachers tend to think they don’t have time for breaks (the more overwhelmed you are, the less time you think you have) but the reality is: the more you have to do the more important breaks are. Breaks don’t have to take a long time! It can be a walk, a quick conversation with a colleague, or step outside and listen to some music.
Connect With Other Professionals
When we get overwhelmed, we sometimes tend to shut other people out. We feel like we don’t have time for anything, especially not collaboration or socializing. Connecting with others —especially people who understand what you are going through — can make all of the difference. Don’t be afraid that others will judge you. Everyone has been where you are.
Connect With Others Outside Of Teaching
Just as connecting with other professionals in education, it is also important to connect with people outside of teaching. We can tend to get wrapped up in our own world, without our own “emergencies” so spending time with those outside our world to see that there is a whole world happening outside of our own overwhelm. Sometimes, taking a break gives us a more broad view of things and helps bring down our overwhelm and lesson our burnout.
Be Gentle With Yourself
As teachers, we can be so hard on ourselves! We think we should be able to do everything and do it without a hair out of place. 🙂
Teaching is hard and we all need to remember to be gentle with ourselves. So the next time that little voice in your head tells you everything you are doing wrong or what you “should” be doing, tell it you aren’t listening anymore!
Talk to yourself like you would talk to someone you love!